The Six-Fingered Monarchy of the Dytikan Coast.
The Dytikan Coast has rumbled with the forces of Mankind for countless millenia. With this, various traditions arose and the extended cultures intermixed forming a monoculture and a singular language that could be spoke from one end of the coast to the other. After the landing of the Fourth Fleet, the civilization solidified and began to fight over who could rule. And the battles are still waged, with the Great Dukes channeling the spirits of their ancestors while the common folk hide away in their farms and cities, just aiming to make it through the next days. Before the landing of the Fourth Fleet of Iwa, the Dytikan Coast was filled to the brim with warring Human tribes that remained constantly on edge in feat of Vhaskus, the Undeath of Orcus. As their ancestors had been driven there in exile by the Lich's forces of Orcs. However, with the influence from Iwa, a majority of the groups of humans fell under similar banners. They learned to work together even as they learned the secrets of the Dwarves. Things like city-building, naval prowess and countless more skills were shared between the groups in the years immediately following the landing. And as SosIwa laid roots in the Feng Mountains, humans were preparing for a crusade unlike any that had been seen before. The spark that lit the fuse of this crusade came in the form of a Half-Elf named Hongden. At the turn of the first century, He took an ancient Right-to-Rule challenge and claimed dominion over the town of Forkly. The people could see no wrong in him, and followed him happily as he spent the next decade sweeping through the Dytikan Coast and parts of the Middling Plains to unite all the children of humanity under his blade. After Challenging the might of Renai, he swept south. Beginning the cleansing crusade that would ultimately end in the banishment of Vhaskus and the Establishment of a massive empire named ForkMaw. Due to his intrusions on the Forests of Uuku, an elven supremacy group saw fit to slay him of his elvish heritage. Bringing him to a premature death. With his death, the kingdom fractured into a civil war between the North and the South, and three nations came out of it at the end; Forkden, Araetule, and the Feudal States of KravMaw. Of the three, Kravmaw is the most like Forkmaw. Kravmaw retained it's royal class of citizenry that were brought to power by Hongden, and established the new line of royalty with their descendant of Hongden. Power distributed from the Monarch to the Great Dukes and down. As one of the few entirely inhabitable landscapes, KravMaw has one of the only actual state systems of government. Fit with megalopolises of Dwarven Construction and Dukes holding sway over small parcels of land. But due to the positioning of the Dytikan Coast, apart from the Highlands, it has the most consistently long growing season that isn't marred by catastrophe or weather. This means that most open air and suitable land outside of cities is dedicated to farming. With countless small villages that rely entirely on the export of their crop for survival. By and Large, Kravmaw exports far more food than they eat. Sending food up the Dytikan Coast to Renai, inland to SosIwa and even south to Forkden.
GovernmentThe power structure of KravMaw looks much like their cities, with a lone point at the top in the form of the reigning Monarch, the Sexdactly making webs that connect the rest of the city to her, and with the Senary making up the rigid bottom structure that the citizens interface with.
The MonarchyWhile the head of KravMaw may be called a Monarch, the last true king lived over eight hundred years ago, with the majority of Sehnraum's line being that of the queens. Down to the current queen of KravMaw, the Half-Elf Eruwenn. A second portion of the monarchy is that the ruling caste has a strange mix of races. With Dwarves that stayed on the Dytikan Coast, with Elves that found a place to be real royals, and with Half-Elves masquerading as Humans with longer lives. This has meant that the death of a Monarch has a much greater impact on the world than it might otherwise, with generations of people growing up and dying under the reign of one person, that person gets tied to the psyche of the kingdom. And due to the way the Monarch is treated, this means that many believe that even though the monarch wields the most power in the kingdom, she can never do any real harm. This was put to the test by the errant rule of Cataclysm, but persevered even through that disaster and into the modern era.
The SenaryWhile the Monarch can do no wrong, the Great Dukes are unlikely to be lauded. While the queen is porcelain and untouchable, the Senary are like the boot heel of the power grid. Every good thing they do is attributed to the Queen, and every mishap is their direct fault. That isn't to say that the life of a Great Duke is all bad, however. No, the Great Dukes are often said to be the hands of the Queen, the ones that rule the country according to her wishes. There are always 6 Senary, with each maintaining a massive portion of the country and ruling it as their own. With interactions between the various states being friendly exchanges down to hostile tournaments of battle to relieve the stress of overpopulation and boredom through blood. Many armies, private and domestic, wander the states of KravMaw and it's said that KravMaw has fought more wars against itself than against any of the other kingdoms. This also leads people to believe that the armies are better trained and are always preparing to invade some country or another. This has caused contention with other countries more than once.
The SexdactylAfter the success of the Eldreth Velruuthra's strike at Hongden, the now-human king ordered the establishment of an elite group of spies and soldiers that would keep a watch out across the lands for hints of insurrection or duplicity. The organization has only grown, now known as the SexDactyl or the six-fingered ones, they are most commonly identified by the six fingered gloves that they keep on their persons. They aren't restricted to the lands of KravMaw either. As the The DraKaise Battalion, Renai Revenge Court, and other extra-national entities have earned their jurisdiction outside of the boundaries of their originating countries, the Sexdactyl have grown to be of use to the clans of SosIwa and the heart of the Internment offices of Forkden, and as long as they are useful, they are allowed to remain.
Foreign relationsKravMaw has large armies that are always straining against each other or "Training" in mass war exercises held between members of the Senary. As a few examples of current strained relations;
- - War Exercises near the border of Araetule have recently set off alarms with more postings being placed along the Iwate Foothills and the Western portions of the Forkmaw Range.
- - Trading disputes between Forkden and KravMaw have grown to be more of an issue as people try to smuggle more people via the shipping lanes in both directions.
MilitaryThe Alluvian Authority holds the largest navy and conducts the most active drills with constant naval movements across the oceans. From safeguarding traffic on KravMaw's shores, to fending off Sahuagin aggression in the Alma Bay, to evacuating the southern waters as summer brings the floods rushing in with their towering waves that can wreck any ship. Forkden also holds a long military history that dates back to the reign of Vhaskus with a style of quick naval movements and disboarding of occupants entitled YenWai in Orcish.
Location and bordersFrom the northern-most shores of the Dytikan Coast, where it is barely differentiated from the The Coast of Lights by the presence of Apal, to the edges of the Middling Jungles, down to the mountains that block away Araetule. The borders of KravMaw are well-defined and constantly tested.
ClimateThe Middling Plains experience the longest and least disaster-stricken growing season of the entirety of Ithungsida. With the storms of the south having been softened by the long transit across land and most of the northern storms that cripple Renai being largely muted by the consistently warm waters of the Dytikan Coast. This set of air currents does mean that tornadoes are, if not common, definitely well heard of and expected, and storms are often said to appear almost out of nowhere. Sometimes granting children that First Snow or merely driving home many cries against MeyGana, Roar of the Sea as the laborers work through the fierce storms.
EconomyKravMaw has a very focused economy spread over only a few major facets, including; Agriculture, Animal Handling, Construction, Transportation and Entertainment.
AgricultureAgriculture contributes a lot to the domestic economy of Forkden, with the Highlands producing large quantities of food through large farms and herds of cattle and goat that are grown for slaughter. This food is largely collected and used domestically, that is, sent to the many walled cities over being exported to Renai.
Animal HandlingThe lands of Forkden are well-known for their animal export. From the best adapted and strongest horses in the land of Ithungsida, to a disease-resistant Breeding stock bulls that are exported to the Middling Plains to help strengthen their cattle stocks. Fish Farms are also a common sight off the shores of the Alma Bay or the Highland Beaches, the extreme amount of fish available makes it a constant thing to be exported after preservation methods are undertaken.
Construction(Naval and Aerial)Labor Laws, the prevalence of Slave Labor, and the massive centralization of much of the population in the cities makes a necessity for jobs that don't have much relation to food production, and labor can be difficult to attribute when your space is limited. The many companies have taken advantage of this and turned Forkden into a powerhouse of construction and export. From the massive Naval fleets that Forkden maintains to the Airships that can seemingly only be built in these regions.
TransportationForkden primarily uses manually powered ships and airships with their surplus of willing and usable labor. However, in recent years with the advent of Bulette Engines and similar, the benefits of manual power have began to falter and wane. This has led to a reduction in jobs as companies have began to renovate and retrofit airships like the Togasei - BS44 to the Hongden - BS42.
EntertainmentThe Loxodon of the Highlands maintain their oral myths and chants that echo through the passage of time. This has brought a large feeling of using entertainment for instruction and learning. Stories have morals, plays have meanings, and lessons can be learned from everything. To be an entertainer in Forkden, is to bring your voice and memory to the dark depths of the walled cities, to ride the waves of the oncoming floods and to entrance your listeners with the truths you impart on them.
HealthTo live in Forkden has many facets that you can front.
City LifeIf you live in the cities, you know that your life means little compared to the masses you are in constant close contact with. You are more likely to be kept alive if you have value, or a community that helps you to remain that way. You also know the pain in your bones as the storms roll in or you stumble. You also know the cool feeling of salves as you cover your rashes and pray for the gods to remove Darchada's grasp on you. Once the pain recedes, you'll return to the temples and offer prayers and thanks to whichever god you find worthy and you'll pick up the bland nutrients from the offices of the Enclave. You might eat them this time, or you might sell them.
Rural LifeIf you live outside of the cities, you have a very different view of life. For you are free to wander the waters around your home. Free to interact with nature and when you get sick, you are much less likely to be shunned or lost. This is a double-edged sword, as you know that you might be the cause of your families death, or likewise your sick friends might bring you down as well. For the salves you get from the cities or the AA patrols are effective, but they don't last as long as they might need to. This doesn't change your mood. For if Chando Meywa decrees it as your destiny, then how can you escape it. No, you will live your life as it approaches and you'll do your best to make it matter.
EducationLearning when the tides come in, how to track the seasons and how to navigate the regions of their environments. The majority of Forks in the country view the paths to finding the education they need as simple. You, or your parents, can find a mentor to train you as an apprentice. Or you can join one of the government backed jobs such as the Authority Patrols and learn for yourself the ways of the world. This has lead to an individualist spirit that holds that anyone can find their purpose in life, anyone can advance. It merely takes effort and the aid of those that raised you. This does mean that orphanages are visited by swaths of volunteer tutors and other groups to help those without a backing. Sometimes providing better education to those without resources than those of middle-class families.
ArchitectureMost homes in the cities of Forkden are built out of similar heavy stone as the walls within which they reside, however, the difference between City and Rural Architecture merits having two different discussions on the topic.
City ArchitectureIf you look at the architecture in the cities, you'll see remnants of those ancient builders of the walled cities. Where stone could be shaped with a precise eye and placed against the annual waves that flatten modern construction attempts in the Southern Floodlands. Within these gargantuan walls the ancient stone has been covered in new construction that has no relation to the old. From stone pillars that mark the different levels of the tower-like cities, to the countless different materials that have been used to bring a sense of individualism to these lands that have been so removed from nature.
Rural ArchitectureOutside the city, the separation from nature is far less present. People have grown to understand the floods, and instead of trying to resist, they go with the flow. Most rural villages and cities being made out of easily transportable materials or even boats that rise with the initial surge of waters. Some of the largest hold thousands of people that come and go yearly. Choosing to trade neighbors and environments for new and more exciting areas. The boats are often built for stability and durability over aesthetics, but visages of MeyGana are often found carved into the areas as altars both makeshift and professional.
ReligionReligion in Forkden is an odd affair, embraced by high society and businesses and used to justify extensive celebration of the holidays. Indeed, the cultural norms of Forkden are largely swayed by what can be justified as expenses. The most well-known expression of these norms are the Parades of Forkden. Filled with countless floats that ascend from the depths of the cities until they top the massive walls and set off Bulette Powdered Fireworks as well as spells that light up the sky. Generally, worship in Forkden centers around any of the gods, however, during the floods MeyGana, Roar of the Sea, Rogalev, the Human Adventurer and Firn, the Chilled Halfling are called out to in the loudest voices. Seeking the protection reserved for Travelers of the Sea as it washes over them, Of Civilization as it is threatened, and of Community as they must band together. The rest of the Pantheon is openly welcomed in the land of Forkden, all noting that the gods have their holidays and domains, and deserve respect in those instances they can be.
Water DrummingThe splashing, clapping, chants that ring through many of the rivers and landscapes of Forkden are known as Water Drumming. This is largely a rural tradition, said to have been invented by migratory Human tribes that began walking back to their yearly homes while the yearly floodwaters were still flowing out to the oceans. On these walks, they would sing and chant histories and songs as they made their way home. During these walks, children playing in the waters found that they could make noises and sounds along with the chants. In time, these children's noises and chants transformed into something entire villages could take part in. With up to hundreds of people singing together and performing intricate musical performances. However, it has also been reduced to official performance groups of 6-10 people that perform in specialized waist-high basins in cities and areas across Ithungsida. While the practice originated in the depths of the Southern Floodlands, cities like Izala and Aegis have also adopted this form of music making with native groups performing in their own fashions and incorporating anything from magic to other instruments into the performance.